Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Cocktail party... YEAH!!

Sunday is my birthday, so I invited some of my friends to celebrate coming Saturday, and we will go on till early morning Sunday. We had 2 weekends ago a huge party at my house and we are planning to make it even wilder this coming weekend!

So neighbors if you are home, be aware, there is a wild bunch at my house this weekend!!

Since we have a full bar here in our house, I am planning to create with the help of my hubby who is an excellent bartender a lot of exotic drinks, shots and shooters. We will have some great dance music going on and some other fun activities... parties at our house tend to be really crazy, like dancing on tables, jumping in pools with clothes on... things like that, so I am expecting a lot from this crazy bunch that I call my friends!!

I invited about 12 couples, so the house will be full, fun, loud, crazy, wild, excotic, hilarious, unforgettable!!

These are some of the drinks we are planning to prepare.... Apache shot, Blue Hawaii, Cockroach shot and Mardi Gras Mango Rita, but there will be many more.....

I will keep you updated after the party and will show you some PG-13 pictures of the party....
Because what happens in South Africa stays in South Africa :-)

Have a good one!

Monday, January 25, 2010

I ♥ faces, week 4: Textures

I haven't participated a few weeks now, but I am back with a texture picture. I saw a picture online with make-up and flowers at a runway sometime last year, and it stuck to me so I recreated the idea with Jasmine and Juliet. This picture I used this year for our Holiday Greetings. The girls are only 7 but in this pose they look going towards 17! A bit scary.... but it was a very fun afternoon... more work than you think. But I like those creative moments and my girls are good and patient models :-)

Photo is edited with Holly Choc, to make it more vintage!

Check out the other contestants at I ♥ faces, you will see some great textures!!

Have a Marvellous Monday!
Mireille ♥

Friday, January 22, 2010

The mystery of the lost bunnies...

I've written before about our bunnies and my last story was the battle of the bunnies, you can read again here. So we had the mother with the 5 babies, and just before we left for Holland to celebrate Xmas we let them all out in the yard. Our gardener would take care of them during our break. We started a few days before we left, so we could see for ourselves how it would go.

Well, they were as happy as a bunny can be!! They were jumping from joy to walk and run freely around our quite big garden, so much to discover! It was so cute to see. Winter with her 5 babies enjoying Paradise!! We had so much fun to sit in the yard and just look at them!

But then after the first night, we discovered only 4 babies... we looked and looked everywhere, no 5th bunny to be found. That is weird, maybe he/she is hiding in the burrow we thought and let's wait till tomorrow. The next morning we still couldn't find her and now we are worried, but it is time to go on vacation, so we tell Betias our gardener to keep an eye on them!

After 2 days in Holland we are getting a call from him, another one is gone!! Now we have only 3 left. We are speculating and guessing how can that be.... an owl or a cat that is taking our bunnies? But by this time they are almost as big as the mother and the adults never got eaten by predators?? Weird, but we give Betias the advice to put all the baby bunnies into the cage again, till we are back from our vacation.

After a few days home we decide to let the 3 out again, they are the same size now as the mother and we are hoping for the best. A few days it is OK, but then suddenly the 3rd one is gone as well. Devastated but not knowing what to do we talk to the girls and tell them the rules of nature. Survival of the fittest! We can't keep the babies, who are not babies anymore forever in the cage. So we decide to keep the last 2 out with the mother in our garden. And if they get eaten, well, then so be it! It wasn't an easy task to decide, but what we were doing the last few days wasn't easy either. We left them out of the cage during the day and then at night before sunset we would catch them and put them in the cage for the night. Well, this catching took us most days 45 minutes to 1 hour, that gets boring fast too!!

Mother Winter with one of her babies Amarula.

Luckily these 2 which are left over, are we guess now, fast and smart enough to run away from either an owl or cat that is roaming our garden at night. Because mother Winter and her 2 survivors are with us now since we are back from our Xmas vacation. We are happy with the family of 3 and hope we can keep them for a long time!!

This whole bunny story was quite the ordeal. We had 9 in total and now we ended up with 3... An important life lesson for JJ and Jezz. First the pregnancy, the feeding and taking care of the babies, seeing them growing up so fast, the attack of the others, then the disappearing of 3 babies. Life is not easy for a bunny ;-(

I had enough drama with these bunnies. I hope they just will live in peace in our garden without giving us too much trouble anymore.....

Have a FAB Friday!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Shwe-Shwe Poppis

A few weeks ago I bought a cute little hand-made doll named a Shwe-Shwe Poppi. The Shwe Shwe Poppis Co-operative Project is a community-based doll production project in Soweto which provides beneficiaries with skills and a sustainable income. The dolls are adapted from drawings made by kids at the Zola crèche in Soweto, one of the biggest townships here in South Africa and are sold locally through accredited dealers and internationally throughout the EU and the US. After the child's doll is sold, (s)he receives a royalty payment for the ‘design'. A trust account is opened with these funds and the children can pay for school and university fees. The project started as a small, informal charity-based project which could not expand due to market failures that hindered the business accessing finance to expand production capacity. ComMark's involvement in addressing this failure has allowed the business to flourish.

The one I bought is in the first picture on the left, although it is a bit different. Each one is unique and mine is made by a little girl named Philisiwe. The poppi (doll) is based on her drawing. She loves to play buddy with her friends. Her favorite food is rice and chicken and yellow is her best color! This is written on the tag and bag you get with the doll.

It is such a cute fair trade gift!!

Here are some of the dolls the children draw and the mother's and grandmother's sew together, it is really a hand-made product and made from Shwe Shwe fabric, the South African fabric, hence the name: Shwe-Shwe poppi.

Here you see the ladies making them just on a kitchen table and the other picture is the label that is on each bag that comes with the doll or poppi as they say here in Africa. Of course on each doll is a different picture.

Since I have so many fabrics in my sewing room I am thinking of doing a similar project with local kids and mother's here as well. I am already researching who to do it with. More about this project and other ideas I have later!

Have a great day y'all!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

My heart goes out to all the children & orphans of Haiti!

I am thinking of all the children in Haiti all the time, children who are lost and hungry, maybe even hurt and walking around without any parents or family in Haiti, and it breaks my heart! Also thinking of the orphans who are waiting to be adopted. Must be a terrifying experience for all these precious children and adopted parents!! What if you were in a position that you are on the waiting list or already matched with a child from Haiti? How devastating you must be! You want your child as soon as possible.... catch a plane and get the child yourself, but of course that is not even possible, but the feeling that rages inside you must be just heartbreaking!!

I found this article here and wanted to share it with you:

Haiti Q&A: The ethics of disaster adoption

Q. How many orphans are there in Haiti?

A. There were already about 380,000 orphaned children in Haiti before the earthquake. The Caribbean island, which has a population of about 10 million, may now have more than a million children without parents.

A. Adoption agencies around the world have been flooded by enquiries from the public about adopting Haitian orphans. The Joint Council on International Children's Services (JCICS), a US advocacy organisation, says it has received 150 enquiries about Haitian adoption in the past three days, compared with about 10 a month usually. Some children – who were already in the final stages of being adopted by overseas parents when the quake struck – have already been airlifted out of Haiti, and the US has eased restrictions as a humanitarian gesture, as have France and Canada.

A chartered Dutch plane will arrive in Haiti today to airlift 109 more children, most of whom have already been matched with families in the Netherlands but whose adoptions have now been fast-tracked. Meanwhile, 53 orphans have already been flown to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Indiana-based Kids Alive International, which runs orphanages around the world, is expected to take 50 Haitian orphans to group homes in the Dominican Republic. The Catholic Church in Miami has asked the US government to allow thousands of orphaned Haitians to settle in America, in a scheme modelled on an initiative for Cuba, Operation Pedro Pan, in the Sixties. Under that scheme, 14,000 unaccompanied Cuban children, offspring of parents who opposed Fidel Castro's government, began new lives in the US.

Q. Is it ethical to relocate children from disaster zones?

A. There are honourable precedents such as the Kindertransport programme during the Second World War, which saved 10,000 Jewish children by bringing them from Nazi Germany to Britain. But children's advocacy groups warn against mass airlifts of youngsters overseas in the wake of natural disasters. They cite the 2004 tsunami and the Kashmir earthquake in 2005, arguing that the clamour surrounding children created a legal and ethical free-for-all.

Given the chaotic state of communications in Haiti right now, a big fear is that some children may be shipped overseas without proper checks to see if any extended family members are alive.

Q. Could any of them be evacuated to safety, or even to a better life abroad?

As for the impact on small children, some experts believe foreign adoptions, or being taken into care in an unfamiliar environment, could be psychologically traumatic. SOS Children's Villages, the children's charity has issued a warning that uprooting children in such situations can be stressful and unsettling, and lead to long-term psychological problems for infants who are expected to grow up in an alien culture.

"When you see any child who has lost their family on the news, your natural instinct is to want to go and pick them up and cherish them," it said. "Sometimes international adoption is the right solution for a child, but far more often it is not."

Adoption expert Professor René Hoksbergen, of Utrecht University in the Netherlands, also warns that the hurried evacuation of children may send the wrong signal, encouraging people to assume that children in chaotic situations can be easily relocated. Some of the children evacuated from Cuba under Operation Pedro Pan ended up stranded in remote parts of the US, far from other Cubans, and have since spoken of how the experience scarred them.

Q. Is there a better way?

A. Charities argue that it is more important to register all children, trace any extended family members, and work to rebuild the country rather than removing youngsters from their homeland. Unicef says its priority is to ensure that children affected by the earthquake get the help they need. "While both airlifts and new adoptions are based on valid concerns and come from an obviously loving heart, neither option is considered viable by any credible child welfare organisation," says the JCICS. "Bringing children into the US either by airlift or new adoption during a time of national emergency can open the door for fraud, abuse and trafficking."

Article by Sarah Cassidy, photo credits by Jan Sochor.

Please help Haiti, there are many different organisations out there who need your donation!


Tuesday, January 19, 2010

New Year's Eve in Holland

We celebrated New Year's Eve with our friends Marisca & Martijn. They are very good friends of us and we had a blast. Another couple Petra & Norbert joined us as well for the evening, so in total we were with 6 adults and 6 children. M&M have a boy of almost 4 and a baby girl of 6 months.
P&N have 2 girls, age 7 and 4, so JJ and Jezz had enough company to have fun as well!

In the Netherlands traditionally there are many great TV and music programs, so a lot of people stay home and celebrate with some food and drinks. A traditonal dish is OLIEBOLLEN and APPELFLAPPEN, of course champagne and some other drinks and snacks. At twelve we go outside and shoot of your own fire works. Standing and shooting away, greeting the neighbors who also come outside, we just had a fantastic and traditional New Year's Eve. How fun to do that with some good 'old' friends from Holland!

The afternoon leading up to it we went bowling and we did Cosmic Bowling, that is in the dark and everything is glow-in-the-dark, so much fun with disco music blarng through the bowling alley. The kids and we had so much fun!!
Here some pictures of the events:

Jezz, JJ, Jillian and Justin, the 4 J's ;-)

Marisca, Dirk and Martijn being silly, because I was the big winner of the adults and that was hard to handle for the guys LOL!

Jasmine was the big winner of us all, she had the best score of everybody!! The kids couldn't throw the ball in the gutter, it was protected, so that's why...

Juliet a bit struggling with the big bowling balls...

Dressed to party, all the kids are ready for the big night, none of them wanted to take a nap and stayed up till 2am!!

Sofie, JJ and Anna

The princesses of the night :-) Anna, Jezz and JJ

The girls & Justin sipping children's champagne... but mommy this is just apple juice says Jezz ;-) You can't fool these kids anymore...

Norbert & Dirk, good old buddies!

We had some good times, lots of booz, old memories, because all of us lived on the Canary islands on Tenerife a long time ago and worked in the tourism industry together. We talked about those crazy times when we were young and beautiful.. haha!! And now all married and having children.... Time flies!

Have a good one!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Slowly getting back into the groove of things...

It is the 15th already and this will be my second post of the year..... not a great start here huh? I am sorry but I have a hard time getting into my normal routine! I hope from now on to be a bit better and start blogging on a more regular basis, just because I like it! I like to post and I LOVE to read your blogs as well. I love to read the comments, makes me think and I like the creative process that blogging brings with it. And also I really like that connection I have with you all, from all over the world. I know so many people in every continent that I keep in touch with through this FDD blog, so I don't want to loose you guys by being a bad blogger, so hang in there I am BACK!!

Let me first show you some pictures I made during our vacation in the Netherlands, there are not many, because we only took our tiny camera, since the middle size was stolen and I don't like to schlepp the bigger one around too much. But the outcome of the smaller is not that great.. so here just a few snapshots....

The girls got skeelers for Xmas, and since it was snowing outside they had to try them on in my dad's kitchen, a bit small but for the girls it was perfect ;-)

All the children at the New Year's eve party: JJ, Jezz, Justin, Jillian, Sophie & Anna.

Me and my dad at his 70th Bday party!

My youngest brother Perry, and my mom with JJ and Jezz.

Dirk's side of the family: his sister Willeke and husband Martin, their daughters Nienke & Sanne, grandpa Sjoerd and boyfriend of Nienke; Aaron.

Our nieces, Nienke & Sanne with JJ & Jezz.

These pictures are all SOOC; straight out of camera, since I don't know how to work on my Mac that much yet....
Just a snapshot of our vacation in the Netherlands, or Holland as they call it mostly.

Have a great day y'all!

Monday, January 11, 2010

HAPPY 2010!!

OK, maybe a little late but I wish everybody a really great New Year!! A much better year than last year if yours wasn't that wonderful. I can feel it this will be a good year for a lot of people!!

We are back into our ritme of school since today, so I have time to blog, am over my jet lag... I was in 3 continents and 4 countries these last 2 weeks, so for now I stay put for a short while :-) However, people who know me know that this won't be for long!!

We were in the Netherlands visiting our families for Xmas and some good friends for New Years. We really had a good time, celebrating my cousin's Jesse 9th Bday bash on the 24th, celebrating Xmas and my father's Bday on the 25th, celebrating and having a feast of a dinner with Dirk's sister on the 26th and on the 27th a big Bday bash for my dad and some of his friends and colleagues because he turned 70! So a lot of food, meeting friends and family, last minute shopping in Holland, celebrating for the first time in 11 years Xmas in the Netherlands!! Fun, but COLD, WINDY, RAINY, so... probably it will take another decade before we return to Holland to celebrate Xmas... rather go in spring or summer....

Funny, they say the Dutch are rude or blunt, direct and open and normally I don't notice that so much, since I am Dutch myself... but I guess I've changed and adapted a bit to more different ways because I was pretty surprised myself about the directness of the Dutch people this time around. I've sent about 120 Xmas cards to all over the world, which I do every year. It is my only contact in paper form that I keep up as my tradition, and normally I get nice comments about my cards or Thank You's from people that I knew from the past and are still in my contact list but they are surprised they are still there. Most people really enjoy a real card these days... which I do myself as well... so I make an effort to create a funky card every year. Not the usual Xmas scene, too normal for me :-) so I start thinking about this around August, theme, colors etc.. etc..

Well, you have seen my card and you know what I am talking about... so here are some comments of Dutch people... no need to mention names, just sharing their comments: "I don't like the card, a bit creepy with that 3rd eye"..... and: "You are exploiting your children too much!" Not a Thank You for the card, although I prefer a much simpler theme, more Xmassy... NO, just a blunt/rude comment, not even a side comment, nothing else, just that! On top of that, these people didn't send us a card... I guess this is the last year that I will send them one too!

How many people send a Xmas card with a picture of their children?? Is it that mine is just a bit more out of the box theme, or are all people exploiting their children when they send a Xmas card with their children/dog/cat on it?? Dutch people can be so negative or jealous that they are not able to create a unique card, I don't know what it is... but things like this makes me happy that I moved away!! Some people can never be happy for anybody else, always negative... I learned by living in the USA that: If you have nothing positive to say, don't say anything at all!! The Dutch people could learn a lesson from this!!

But enough about Xmas cards, it's a new year with new challenges, adventures, fun times ahead of us and I am looking forward to create a great year, have fun galore, travel to new places and some old but much loved places, like Thailand!!
Did I tell you that while the soccer season is going on here in June/July and Dirk is totally excited to go to 10 games, YES, he has tickets to 10 games. Which would mean I would sit alone, be stuck in traffic and have to deal with all the craziness I decided to go to Thailand with the girls for 8 weeks! Koh Samui and Bangkok here we come!! WHOA!!
The girls have 10 weeks summer (here winter) break and it is cold here, boring because everybody goes home so we are relaxing on a beach in Koh Samui. The girls will go to Thai school in the morning, so hopefully they will absorb some Thai language and culture, how nice is that??!!

Pictures I can't upload yet, I have a new Mac Book Pro and haven't installed the camera's on here yet... so you have to wait for that a bit more. I need Dirk's help for that, but he is traveling....

Glad to be back behind my computer again, I just read some of your blogs and updated on most of you again!
Have a great week!


Related Posts with Thumbnails